Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Arm and Train Teachers to Kill: Gun Idiots

Some US folks who have had it with the pro-gun lobby intimidating, coercing and threatening its way into an exalted, near religious franchise in their country have responded strongly.

With words of course, because this would be the moment to demonstrate how the pen is mightier than the sword, rational discourse trumps irrational shrieeeking and internet activism might triumph over guns.

There have been many, many admirable and gut-wrenching pieces written in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook School massacre. Blithering glurge has also been produced, typically by those taken with a well-calculated Munchausen by proxy-like blog post.

This one may be my favourite, as it encapsulates the forces at play in the US.
The gun is our Moloch. We sacrifice children to him daily—sometimes, as at Sandy Hook, by directly throwing them into the fire-hose of bullets from our protected private killing machines, sometimes by blighting our children’s lives by the death of a parent, a schoolmate, a teacher, a protector. Sometimes this is done by mass killings (eight this year), sometimes by private offerings to the god (thousands this year).

The gun is not a mere tool, a bit of technology, a political issue, a point of debate. It is an object of reverence. Devotion to it precludes interruption with the sacrifices it entails. Like most gods, it does what it will, and cannot be questioned. Its acolytes think it is capable only of good things. It guarantees life and safety and freedom. It even guarantees law. Law grows from it. Then how can law question it?

Its power to do good is matched by its incapacity to do anything wrong. It cannot kill. Thwarting the god is what kills. If it seems to kill, that is only because the god’s bottomless appetite for death has not been adequately fed. The answer to problems caused by guns is more guns, millions of guns, guns everywhere, carried openly, carried secretly, in bars, in churches, in offices, in government buildings. Only the lack of guns can be a curse, not their beneficent omnipresence.

Adoration of Moloch permeates the country, imposing a hushed silence as he works his will. One cannot question his rites, even as the blood is gushing through the idol’s teeth. The White House spokesman invokes the silence of traditional in religious ceremony. “It is not the time” to question Moloch. No time is right for showing disrespect for Moloch.
Armed with words, compassionate and strong words.

There are sadly though, gun-fetishizing idiots in the US who demand that teachers be armed with weapons, to stop any potential attacks, oh no, wait - to *defend*. That's their buzz-word, their holy mantra. 

This kind of exchange is unfortunately quite typical of that mentality.

The assumption that any armed person can stop someone equipped bent upon carnage with assault weapons is mind-boggling.  Military and police teams train daily, for months and years, in order to develop the finely calibrated responses required to deal with this type of volatile - and deadly - situation.  

Aaron is so convinced that "the lack of guns can be a curse, not their beneficent omnipresence" that he can't see the training and the mindset required for this role is antithetical to what teachers do.  He would prefer that teachers devote their extra time to developing those specific skills deployed by SWAT personnel, instead of coaching, mentoring, nurturing, guiding children?

And then Wayne provides a link to this.  Oh glorious USA, land of opportunities, profits and ever-increasing deaths by gunfire.

Reading the comments that follow Garry Wills' piece is educational - and disheartening.  Yes, there are idiots but some people do still cherish the hope that their murderous US gun culture can - and will - shift gears.


ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

As Steve Benen notes, senior Republicans really think the answer is more guns in schools, and these are officials in positions of real responsibility and influence.

Sixth Estate said...

I get it. The solution to guns in school is... more guns in school!

We shouldn't stop at teachers. We should arm students for their own self-defence. After all, what happens when someone brings a gun to the playground? Are you going to call a teacher for help? That won't work, for the same reason these gun nuts say you can't just call for the police when you need help, you have to be prepared to defend yourself. So every student should be issued a gun along with all other essential school supplies on day 1.

Of course, someone may come onto the school armed with something heavier than your standard-issue student weapon. So there should be several caches of heavier arms at key strategic points around the schoolhouse. And an armoured personnel carrier. Just in case.

Boris said...

The teachers of course are always being of sound and serene mind...

Anonymous said...

Great post. This idea just blows my mind. I was actually discussing this whole notion with my uncle over the weekend who just retired from the RCMP who basically stated what you did, that law enforcement trains long hours for this. I know first hand that teachers' days are already filled up with enough things to deal with let alone having to take marksmanship courses as well.

deBeauxOs said...

Thank you for yr comment.

We've had disagreements on other issues; it's heartening to know that you understand this one so well.

Anonymous said...

It would add a new dimension into why people would choose to become teachers. People who just had the desire to teach, would also have to be comfortable handling a gun and shooting to kill. Would this be taught in university along with blackboard skills? Weird.

Anonymous said...

Thanks deBeauxOs, sadly, I've had waay too much first-hand experience of seeing what a gun can do to young people who use it on themselves. My uncle was a hell of a shot and an RCMP marksman. Experienced as he is, he even had his own mishap when he misfired his own weapon and grazed his leg. Really, if a man with that much practice and experience can do that accidentally then I can only imagine what might happen in the case of someone with lesser skill.

Beijing York said...

Nancy Lanza was the type of woman that the NRA pats on the back for choosing to protect herself and her child with a cache of weapons. She even took her son to the firing range to train him up. Had this tragedy not happened, the NRA might have featured her as a "poster gal" for their members.

But love can turn into hate in a nanosecond for these gun toting enthusiasts. Today Nancy Lanza was buried in a very private ceremony and the Newtown CT church bells only tolled for the 26 of the 28 fatalities. Cognitive dissonance seems to run rampant in the US of A.

thwap said...

It's really staggering, when you get an inkling of the moronic, fantastic view of the world that these idiots have.

Supposedly, all teachers will have concealed weapons on them. People will burst through classroom doors and teachers will immediately drop what they're doing and pull their weapons and not kill some exuberant youngster or a vice-principal telling them that somebody important is arriving, but they will drop any deranged gunmen going on rampages with their legally acquired weapons.

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